Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin on Tuesday gave away a ₹1 crore cheque to Kartiki Gonsalves, director of Academy Award winning documentary, "The Elephant Whisperers."

At the Secretariat, Stalin presented her a memento, shawl and a certificate of commendation and gave her the cheque, a government incentive. He congratulated her on winning the Oscar Award, which she brought with her.

An official release here said that the documentary attracted world-wide attention on the Tamil Nadu government Forest Department's work in protecting elephants.

The documentary depicted the care and love showered by caretakers, Belli and her husband Bomman, in rearing abandoned baby elephants at the government-run Theppakkadu Elephant Camp in the Nilgiris District. The short film was on two elephant calves, 'Raghu' and 'Ammu.'

By winning the Oscar Award, the documentary has made Tamil Nadu proud. For bringing laurels by making known the commendable work in nurturing elephants, the incentive was given, the government said.

Forest Minister Maru Ma Mathiventhan, Chief Secretary V Irai Anbu and top officials took part.

Tamil documentary "The Elephant Whisperers" created history at the 95th Academy Awards by becoming the maiden Indian production to win in the Documentary Short Subject category.

On March 15, 2023, Stalin felicitated Bomman and Belli, who were featured in the documentary and presented them cheques of ₹1 lakh each, a shield and shawl to honour them.